Crunch!

Whoops. Stolen from a friend’s FB feed, seems a USAR operated LCU-2000 landing craft suffered a grounding in Alaska.

A U.S. Army Reserve landing craft hit a rock just south of Kodiak Island late Friday and was then beached on a small strip of land, where it leaked fuel Saturday, according to the Coast Guard.

The Coast Guard estimates the 174-foot Monterrey has leaked more than 15,000 gallons of diesel fuel into Chiniak Bay.

It hit Humpback Rock about 10:15 p.m. Friday and began taking on water. Two crewmen out of the 17 onboard suffered minor injuries in the collision with the rock, and a Coast Guard helicopter and two good Samaritan boats in the area arrived soon after to help. The Monterrey crew piloted the vessel onto tiny Puffin Island so it wouldn’t sink, the Coast Guard said.

The Monterrey, a landing craft with the 481st Transportation Company located in Vallejo, Calif., was taking supplies and heavy equipment from Port Hueneme, Calif., to Bethel for the U.S. Marine Corps.

Fortunately, looks like no serious injuries. And I’m optimistic they can repair the vessel. The Army doesn’t have a heck of a lot of LCU’s anymore, and they tend to keep them pretty busy.

Craig talked briefly about the Army’s various watercraft in an earlier post.  I toured one while serving as a recruiter in Indiana (they tied up at Benton Harbor specifically so we could bring prospects to visit her). Not much more capacity that earlier LCUs, but far more habitable. Quite comfy, actually.

9 thoughts on “Crunch!”

  1. Puffin Island, that they beached on, was once part of the Army’s coastal defenses of Kodiak Island during WWII. You can still see the ruins as you go into Womens Bay and St. Paul Harbor. If I remember correctly, it was a searchlight installation.

    1. I stand corrected. I read a book a few years back on the cable laying vessels in Alaska that layed the cable for all the installations during the war. Unfortunately I can’t recall the title. Puffin was mentioned along with the activities on Long Island.
      There are some interesting sites still intact on coastal Alaska. Barwell Island near Resurrection Bay has a construction on it’s peak that makes you weary just thinking that all the materials were carried up by hand.
      We used to wait for weather to improve in Beaver Inlet, Unalaska Island. As we were going back and forth, we would count the small Quonset Huts stuck on the sides of the bluffs. Amazing that they would climb partway up (or down) the near vertical bluffs, blast out a flat spot and put up these huts. Beaver Inlet is on the other side of a ridge from Dutch Harbor.

  2. A friend was in the Army back in the late 60s early 70s and stationed in Germany for most of that hitch. He said they used to run a “Re-Up” ad that went something like “Thinking of joining the Navy? Forget that. Go Army Navy.” I was still in the Navy when he told me that and when I laughed at it he said the career counselors were dead serious.

    1. And now, 40 years later, we have people who have spent too much time licking their braid floating ideas like “naval infantry.” Maybe it’s not stupidity, just payback.

      1. I think there is very much a place for the Navy in the brown water. I thought it shameful that Army and Marines had to stand up their own provisional riverine forces in Iraq while Big Blue futzed around for years (that’s a knock on the Big Navy, not the tens of thousands of IAs who did what was asked of them and did it well).

        If I ever get off my butt, I’ll finish my Brown Water series. The Navy has capabilities in instituting a brown water force that the Army doesn’t. So it is rightly their mission. But as soon as it is no longer trendy, they’ll ditch it.

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